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Other-regarding preferences, spousal disability and happiness: Evidence from German couples

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  • Nils Braakmann

    () (Institute of Economics, University of Lüneburg)

Abstract

This paper considers the impact of adverse health shocks that hit an individual’s partner on subjective well-being. Using data on couples from the German Socio-Economic Panel for the years 1984 to 2006, I compare the losses in well-being caused by own and spousal disability using panel-regressions. I find that women and to a lesser extent men are harmed by spousal disability which is consistent with the existence of other-regarding preferences within couples. The magnitude of effects suggests that spousal disability is about one quarter to one half as harmful as individual disability with larger effects being found for women.

Suggested Citation

  • Nils Braakmann, 2009. "Other-regarding preferences, spousal disability and happiness: Evidence from German couples," Working Paper Series in Economics 130, University of Lüneburg, Institute of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:lue:wpaper:130
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Oswald, Andrew J. & Powdthavee, Nattavudh, 2008. "Does happiness adapt? A longitudinal study of disability with implications for economists and judges," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(5-6), pages 1061-1077, June.
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    6. Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell & Bernard M.S. van Praag, 2002. "The subjective costs of health losses due to chronic diseases. An alternative model for monetary appraisal," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(8), pages 709-722.
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    Cited by:

    1. LEROUX, Marie - Louise & PONTHIERE, Grégory, 2009. "Wives, husbands and wheelchairs : Optimal tax policy under gender-specific health," CORE Discussion Papers 2009071, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
    2. Marie-Louise Leroux & Grégory Ponthière, 2009. "Wives, husbands and wheelchairs: Optimal tax policy under gender-specific health," Working Papers halshs-00575059, HAL.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    disability; subjective well-being; other-regarding preferences;

    JEL classification:

    • D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy; Intergenerational Transfers
    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination

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